July 31, 2017

Turnip Salad With Yogurt, Herbs, And Poppy Seeds

Recipe: Joshua McFadden with Martha Holmberg

Try this recipe for Turnip Salad With Yogurt, Herbs, And Poppy Seeds from the cookbook Six Seasons: A New Way With Vegetables.

5-Six-Seasons_NEW-thumbnailThe large amount of poppy seeds in this dish adds an amazing floral quality, plus plenty of crunch. You could swap crème fraîche for the yogurt, if you’re feeling luxurious, and if you have some chervil, add that to the mix of herbs. Make sure you drain the turnips super well and serve the dish right away; otherwise, things may get a bit soggy.


  • 1 bunch Japanese turnips, with their tops if they’re nice and fresh, trimmed so there’s just a nice 1/4 inch of green stems left
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • 1/2 tsp dried chile flakes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup plain whole-milk or low-fat yogurt (not Greek)
  • About 1 cup lightly packed mixed herbs: mint leaves, flat-leaf parsley leaves, and chives cut in 2-inch lengths
  • 4 scallions, trimmed (including 1/2 inch off the green tops), sliced on a sharp angle, soaked in ice water for 20 minutes, and drained well
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup poppy seeds


Yield: Serves 4

  1. Slice the turnips lengthwise as thin as you can. If you have a mandoline, use it; otherwise make sure your knife is sharp and just go slowly. Soak the slices in ice water for 15 to 20 minutes, then drain very well.
  2. Rinse, dry, and roughly chop the turnip greens (if they’re not in great shape, give them a quick sauté in a small amount of olive oil). Put the turnips in a bowl and squeeze in about half the lemon. Add the chile flakes, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and many twists of black pepper and toss to blend. Add the yogurt and toss again. Taste and adjust the seasoning so they are quite bright. Add the herbs, scallions, and 1/4 cup olive oil and toss again. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
  3. Scatter half the poppy seeds on the bottom of a platter or individual serving plates, top with the turnip salad, and finish with the rest of the poppy seeds. Serve right away.

Laura Dart & A.J. Meeker


Excerpted from Six Seasons: A New Way With Vegetables by Joshua McFadden (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2017. Photographs by Laura Dart and A.J. Meeker. Used with the permission of the publisher.

Tags: Recipe Salad